So I went to bed last night feeling mighty angry at Champ Car and the keystone cops who are apparently running the joint. Things happen in business, we all understand that, especially in the business of racing. Drivers leave, events fail, sponsors drop out, etc… etc… For those things, the fault cannot be soley placed at the foot of those in charge at CC. HOWEVER… not being in control of your message, Remaining silent in the face of adverse situations, spinning after the fact rather than preemptively telling the story (preferably the truth)… that blame rightfully sits squarely on their laps.
I’m not quite as furious today. Just slightly pissed off and extremely disappointed. This cancellation wasn’t just one race. (of three!! but I digress…) It was the season finale. It brought the series back to North America to wrap up the season. It allowed those of us that busted our humps all year and scrimped and saved and traveled across the country to champion and follow and enjoy the series the opportunity to share in the closure of the 2007 season with all it’s ups and downs. It allowed us to gather with our friends and colleagues one last time before the hiatus to share stories and laughter and friendship. It allowed us to say goodbye and thank you to Seabass as he wraps up his tenure with the series. Love him or hate him, he was incredible on track and will be sorely missed competitively by the series next year.
All that is lost now.
The championship is tainted further as the points chase is compromised yet again.
The season will end in Mexico, where the relationship with Champ Car is tenuous at best due to years of bad tv, loss of sponsorship, loss of a second race and lack of Mexican drivers. The American media will barely take a whiff of this as a story as it will be at that point, irrelevant.
Any plans to wine and dine and impress potential future supporters of the series (be it sponsors, event planners, drivers, owners, media, etc…) are now for naught. It ain’t gonna happen in Mexico that’s for damn sure.
This is a clusterfuck of epic proportions.
So what’s the fall out?
Anyone in the process of working a deal is now backpeddaling and attempting to save face. The fan base, who are getting increasingly tired of being sucker punched in return for their loyalty are in revolt mode. Would you pre book a flight or hotel package at this juncture? I know I won’t. And that’s going to be an issue as the better deals are to be found in advance. Perhaps I’ll only book for races that if canceled the location is still suitable for a vacation, that way the potential loss is minimized. Drivers/teams who were perhaps on the fence about joining or returning to the series could perhaps be rethinking their plan of action. If you’re Robert Doornbos, do you turn down an offer with F1 to continue on in a series that is being built and run on a foundation of quicksand and “just believe”?
Oh and lets not forget that CC managed to preemptively piss off the entire group of N. American motorsports media prior to this disaster. Smooth move exlax. Now instead of potentially having your back and rationally trying to explain the situation, they will jump in with both feet to point and laugh at the situation at hand. Or they will merely ignore it. (an even sadder statement)
damn, I’m getting mad again. Time to step away from the computer for a bit.